EVER BEEN HAD
Robin was jumping up and down very excitedly whilst he was waiting impatiently for me to put on my hat and coat. He was keenly interested in trains, so I had promised to take him to the Railway Station, where he could sit and watch the trains to his hearts’ content.
On the journey to town he chattered away, telling everyone on the bus that he was going to see lots and lots of trains. Arriving at the station, to my consternation he scampered away from me. I thought I would never be able to catch him but finally, I succeeded. Grabbing hold of his hand I pulled him well away from the platform’s edge.
After two hours of listening to the noise of the hissing steam, the whistles of the guards, the banging of the doors and the voice over the tannoy system, I was becoming rather tired and I could feel a pain in my head. I managed to persuade Robin to sit alongside me while he ate his sandwiches. Soon he had eaten his fill and was eager to return his attention to the trains. Extracting a promise from him not to move too far away from me, I kept my eyes fixed rather anxiously on him until finally, Robin became weary and seated himself beside me, then, and only then, did I become aware of a stranger seated the other side of me. How long had he been sat there? I wondered.
Robin’s voice startle me, “Can we go home now mummy?” he asked. I uttered a sigh of relief. “Yes dear”. I said looking at my watch, “we have twenty minutes before our bus comes”. Suddenly I noticed a package on the seat. The strange must have left it behind! Robin saw it, and shouted – “Mummy it moved, I saw it, it moved!”.
Like lightening he mad a grab for it, but I very quickly grasped his hands to stop him and pulled him towards me. Then I froze, I was absolutely terrified, I was convinced it was a package bomb.
Suddenly, with a crackling noise, the brown paper burst, a black lid sprung up and out popped a clown’s head. It was a “Jack in a Box!” Robin laughed and laughed until his tummy ached, but I felt ridiculously foolish. I didn’t recover from the shock until we arrived home safe and sound.
The last traces of summer began to disappear from the face of the hills. The leaves on the trees promising to make a deep, rustling carpet in the autumn, the green berries on the rowan and hawthorn trees were sure to provide a welcome feast for the birds during the coming winter. Elizabeth thought it would have been nice if she could have seen the glory of the autumn leaves, just once more. Then she sadly wended her way down the hillside, towards her little cottage nestling in the valley below.
She wasn’t looking, but she was going back to London after the idyllic years she had spent in this lovely valley, but she was sorely needed there. Sadly, she thought of her father, who would be all alone now that her mother had died. How he would miss her! They had been so close.
Remembering their affectionate glances, and their jocular but tender teasing of one another, she felt the tears filling her eyes. But they were not for these memories, they were for those she would never have of herself and John, whom she had loved so much, never dreaming that one day he would leave her to live on in loneliness. Would she be unloved? No! She still had he beloved father.
Thanks to Derek Brunt for letting me type Edith Brunt’s memories. (Linda Taylor, nee Staton)